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     " It was baffling, inconsistent, and obviously created by 3 baboons on a drunken binder. "

      Title: Blade II by New Line Cinemas

      Format: Theatrical Action Movie

      Reviewing Monkey: Dungapult

      The Hype: Blade, the half human half vampire vigilante of the undead is back in his latest adventure. This time he's forced to join forces with the vampires he has dedicated his life to slaying in order to take on a new breed of super vampires. But will his gothic fashion sense and new found leech-like playmates be enough to stop this previously unknown evil or will Blade bite the big one (get it? Bite! 'Cause he's a vampire! Oh, never mind…)?

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Story and Acting: Well, not one to repeat myself terribly often in my reviews let me just say that the write up above pretty well sums the whole thing up. Blade is approached by those he's so accustomed to staking and is asked to lead an elite group of inhuman mosquitoes against this new "strain" of the vampire virus. They're bigger, they're badder, and they spread a lot faster. All in all, not the plot of the century- but is still a pretty good premise for an action flick, a downright exceptional idea since in vast majority movies based on comic books suck.
           Unfortunately, it's when you get into developments and social interactions that Blade 2 falls apart. Major plot points come and go with the blink of an eye, the undercurrent of deceit and betrayal is given only the most cursory of acknowledgements, giant holes in the story are tripped over and then ignored without reproach, and changes in character perceptions and attitudes are listed only as minor foot notes. Worst of all, though, is the feeble attempt at a love story- in which Blade inexplicably falls in love with one of the vampires shortly after she tries to kill him.
          Accentuating this morass of melodrama are the two-dimensional characterizations and wooden acting delivered by the entire cast (as a matter of fact, the acting is so stiff that I'm pretty sure they replaced Wesley Snipes in a few scenes with an old "Blade" action figure duct taped to a stick). Even Kris Kristofferson and Ron Perlman fail to make this paper thin flick interesting, which may be a fair indication that it's the direction and not the actors who are at fault. 1 out of 5

      Action: If you saw the original Blade, you know that Snipes (playing the title character) is a pretty badass martial artist who likes to do his own fights. Unfortunately for action fans everywhere, that reality (which is a lot of what made the first Blade movie palatable) is completely absent here. The fight scenes, as few as there are, are short, MTV choppy, and shot so close it's impossible to know what's going on. Making matters much worse is the over-abundant use of CGI- perhaps designed to make it look spiffier, but in the end only appears to be brash and cartoonish. 2 out of 5

      Visuals and Directing: Well, the acting is crap- and since there are several people in the movie who we know can act (Kristofferson, Perlman, Snipes, etc.) we can likely attribute a fair portion of that blame on the direction. Making matters even worse is the absolutely profound demand on our suspension of disbelief- from the infinite capabilities of Blade's two tech lackeys (these schmucks make McGuyver look like a boy scout) to the absolute disregard for any shot continuity, any person in their right mind is going to have to turn their higher brain off enjoy what little flow this flick has to offer.
          As for the visuals (read CGI), Blade 2 is an interesting collection of highs and lows. On the plus side, a lot of the "subtle" effects are done fantastically (there's a predator-esque mouth effect that is absolutely amazing). On the down side, someone- somewhere, decided that CGI is getting to the point where it can replace live action…And that person should be shot. From an overindulgence of the "vampire" speed and movement effects to the complete replacement of the actors in key fight scenes, Blade 2 shows like a "what not to do" with modern special effects. They're not that good yet, people…and it's best we don't try to fool ourselves. 2 out of 5

      Sound Track: All in all, it was pretty solid. Loud, in your face, and carrying a stiff backbone beat- I thought the music fit the movie pretty well. I won't be rushing out to by the sound track, though. 3 out of 5

      Value vs. Admission: Well, it was long. I guess that's good- if we're doing the whole time = money thing. Barring that, though, I think you'll have trouble justifying the expenditure. We paid matinee and I still want my money back. 2 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       All in all, the script and plotline for Blade 2 left me not only confused but angry and frequently screaming, "What?!? Why!?!" in the crowded theater I sat. It was baffling, inconsistent, and obviously created by 3 baboons on a drunken binder. The acting is painfully wooden and the over reliance on cheap theatrics and CGI is about as annoying as anything I've seen in cinema lately. In the end, Blade 2 is blissfully forgettable and really isn't worth giving up the time you could spend sleeping.

      The Good: A pretty kick ass cast (who, unfortunately, are dreadfully under used).

      The Bad: Pretty much everything from the credits on.

      The Overall Ugly: "Overall Ugly". That describes it pretty well.

      What it's Worth: Maybe a rental for making fun of with a bunch of friends.

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